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Insider Interview: Operations and Quality Manager for Apprenticeships

As part of our 'Insider Interview' series surrounding everything apprenticeship, we interviewed Julia Goode who has worked in the apprenticeship industry for over 21 years. Julia began her journey as a Tutor and has since worked her way up the ladder to Operations and Quality Manager. We spoke to Julia to get her take on apprenticeships.


My name is Julia Goode, I have worked within the education sector for 21 years, I started at 1st2 Achieve in 2019 as a tutor and I am now the Operations and Quality Manager for apprenticeships within management, leadership, business administration, customer service and digital marketing.

Can you explain what apprenticeships are and how they work?

Apprenticeships a provide an excellent route for young people to enter the labour market while they gain knowledge, the skills and behaviours within their chosen career with an industrial recognised qualification, while you earn a wage.

How do you feel apprenticeships affect the working world?

I feel that people of any age can learn new skills and achieve a certified qualification by completing an apprenticeship, workplaces can help mould these learners’ whist also instilling the right behaviours and attitudes to work within their and any other industry. This means that the talent pool is increased within their sectors and therefore employers have a workforce that are ready to work and help train others.

What is your favourite apprenticeship and why?

My favourite apprenticeship is the business administrator qualification, I feel that this is an excellent starting point to any qualification that will help you within any role within your career, as all jobs have some element of administration to them.

Where can apprentices lead young people once they have achieved their qualification?

Opportunities could open up to them within the company they completed their apprenticeship through, including a possible promotion, moving to a different department to learn new skills or moving onto a whole new company or sector.

What is the highest position you have seen an apprentice achieve?

I have had three learners promoted to a personal assistant to a director of the business and I have had a learner who have used their UCAS points to start a degree through University, which her company has paid for.

What advice would you give to someone who is looking to do an apprenticeship?

Do your research, define what industry you would like to start your career within, do you want to start with a generic apprenticeship which you can use within any job role, or do you know that you want to start with a specific qualification, but ultimately you need to commit to your qualification. It is the best way to get a start within your career choice.

What support is offered during an apprenticeship?

Learners are massively supported throughout their apprenticeship, starting before their new job is secured with CV writing and interview techniques, to having 1-2-1 training each month with their dedicated tutor, online learning courses for personal development, on-site training from their new employer, support when learners have stated they are struggling, whether it is within their work life or home life. Finally, learners are also supported when they have completed their apprenticeship, with information and advise given to progress their careers.

Would you recommend apprenticeships to others?

Yes, I would. I feel that you can gain experience within the real world from knowledgeable people within their field and gain the skills you need to achieve this, whilst earning a wage.

Who can do an apprenticeship?

Anybody can complete an apprenticeship as long as you are 16 or over, living in England and not in full-time education.

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